Birds of a Feather . . . Enforce Social Norms? Interactions Among Culture, Norms, and Strategy
26 Pages Posted: 3 Oct 2019 Last revised: 14 Oct 2019
Date Written: October 1, 2019
This paper analyzes how shared beliefs and preferences (or values) cause the emergence of social norms; why people may enforce norms that go against their own beliefs and preferences/values; and how this may cause a disconnect to develop between the organization's norms and its underlying beliefs and preferences. We further show, among other things, that such social norms are more likely in attractive organizations, for behaviors that have modest personal consequences, and in organizations where employees depend on others' choices to a moderate degree. We finally discuss how these mechanisms help our understanding of culture change and of the interaction between culture and strategy. We argue that culture is not only an input to strategy, but also a substitute and a potential competitor.
Keywords: Strategy, Culture, Norms
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